Buttermilk Spice Cake

Wednesday, 8 September 2010

Today was my Todd's Birthday. I'm not going to tell you which one . . . let's just say he's a national treasure . . . and I mean that in the nicest possible way.

He was on his own for 12 years before we met and got married, and I have made it my mission that . . . for as long as we have together here on earth, I am going to spoil him rotten every chance I get!

That means that I make sure to cook him a fantastic meal on his birthday, and I also like to bake him a special cake to help celebrate the occasion.

Normally I make him his favourite cake, next to fruit cake that is (how did I get so lucky . . . a man who loves fruit cake) . . . a Cherry and Amond Cake. I couldn't get my hands on any ground almonds today though . . . sigh . . . it was the same last week when I went to the shops. There must be a shortage or some such . . . anyways . . .

With no ground almonds in sight, I decided to make him his next best favouritest cake of all.

A Buttermilk Spice cake.

My Todd . . . he is a simple man, with simple tastes. An old fashioned kind of a guy that likes old fashioned, traditional kinds of meals and desserts. Meat, potatoes and stodge.

(Let's face it, he loved school dinners when he was at school . . . and that was during the War . . . Before we got married, he existed almost entirely on tinned curry (blah), sausage rolls and tinned soup)

Back to the spice cake. There is nothing stodgy about this cake. This is a wonderful cake, lovely and moist . . . due to the buttermilk. There is just a hint of spice . . . not enough so that it slaps you in the face, but enough to give it a bit of warmth . . . and . . . shhhh (not a word to my chocolate hating husband) there is just a touch of cocoa powder in it, which believe it or not, really helps to bring out the warmth and sweetness of the spices even more, but not in an obnoxious way!

I usually make a peanut butter frosting for on it, but maple is also very good . . . so is plain old vanilla, but . . . let's face it . . . on your birthday you deserve a bit of a splash out! (We were also celebrating our tenth anniversary of our meeting in person for the first time, so we had a double reason to celebrate!)

Sigh . . . I just adore my Todd. I do love him so . . .

*Buttermilk Spice Cake*
Makes one single layer 9 inch cake
Printable Recipe

A velvety and tender cake, mildly spiced. Delicious! I have frosted it with a peanut butter flavoured buttercream frosting here, but you can use what you want. Maple would be very good as well.

2 large free range eggs, at room temperature
5.3 fluid ounces of low fat buttermilk (2/3 cup)
1 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
200g plain flour (1 3/4 cups)
200g caster sugar (1 cup superfine)
1 1/2 tsp cocoa powder
3 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cloves
4 ounces softened unsalted butter (1/2 cup)

Preheat the oven to 180*C/350*F. gas mark 4. Butter a 9 inch nonstick round baking tin. Line the bottom with parchment paper and butter again. Set aside.

Whisk the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and cloves together in a large bowl. Remove 3 TBS of the buttermilk and mix it together with the eggs and vanilla. Set aside. Beat the remaining buttermilk along with the butter into the dry ingredients, mixing on low speed until the dry ingredients are evenly moistened, then on high speed for about a minute and a half. Slowly beat in the buttermilk/egg mixture, in two parts, scraping down the sides of the bowl. Pour the batter iinto the prepared pan. Level off.

Bake in the preheated oven for 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes ot clean and the tops springs back when lightly touched. Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the pan for ten minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to finish cooling.

Frost as desired.

Note - For a tasty peanut butter icing, beat together 1 TBS each peanut butter and butter, 1/2 tsp vanilla, 200g of icing sugar (sifted) and enough milk to make a creamy and spreadable frosting.


  1. Hi Marie! Lots of happy birthday wishes to your precious Todd! He is one lucky man to be able to eat your yummy cooking every single night! Many, many more happy, delicious birthdays! ...Oh, that cake looks sooo good! ;) Paulette

  2. Happy Birthday to Todd! This recipe sounds so good. You know what I like about cakes made in England...one layer. Plenty. We pile them too high over here! I think I am going to change my baking to one layer cakes.

  3. Happy birthday Todd! I don't normally go for spice cake (not a particular fan of cinnamon). But if I encountered one that looked like that, I'd have trouble resisting! Hope the birthday celebrations went well!

  4. Happy Birthday, Todd! I know you were spoiled rotten today!

    That cake looks amazing, Marie--spice is one of my very favorites...I've never tried it with buttermilk...I bet it's over the top tasty!

    Hope you're doing well, my friend...love and many warm hugs to you tonight!


  5. Happy Birthday, Todd! You are a lucky man to have found such a good cook. What a yummy looking cake!

    hugs, Jenny

  6. Sounds wonderful and looks delicious. I'm sure Todd was delighted

  7. Happy Birthday Todd!! Love the cake - I bet Todd did too!

  8. Oh Marie!! Buon Compleanno Todd!! A VERY happy birthday to you and congratulations to you both- 10 years is indeed a special event!!!
    xoxo Pattie

  9. Happy Birthday Todd you lucky man! Actually it sounds like your both lucky and that cake looks delish!

  10. Congrats on the double celebration. I think you get to "spoil" each other.

  11. Happy Birthday to Todd! That recipe sounds like a winner; buttermilk and spice has to be nice!

  12. Happy Birthday to Todd! The cake looks so moist and cinnamon-y - yum!

  13. Happy day to your hubby..This reminds me of one of your cakes w/ the caramel icing I have made at least 12 times:) You're such a great cook!

  14. Happy, happy Birthday to my dearest Todd!!!I hope you had a lovely and nice Birthday, Blessings and huggs for you and him, xoxoxoxox, gloria

    (some days I cannot enter to your blog dear Marie. today I did) huggssss

  15. That's what I call a Birthday treat - a very happy Birthday to Todd. Love the photo of him too ;0)

  16. What an incredibly cute birthday photo. I love the celebratory hat horns he sported . haha
    Cake looks great and I'd put a dent in it I can tell you!

  17. Happy Birthday Todd! This is such a touching post- he looks like the kind of guy who deserves to be spoilt :) Wonderful cake too Marie xx

  18. Happy birthday Todd! Keep those cakes and recipes coming Marie. Love your blog.

  19. Happy Birthday Todd. I will have a go at making this cake. Thanks for putting in the cup measurements. I don't have much success with sponge cake for some reason. They usually turn out heavy but with 3 tspn of baking powder maybe it will be better.
    I always have success with muffins, no problem!

  20. Hi Marie!
    Who needs a cook book when we have you? Happy Birthday to Todd and congrats on your " meeting in person" anniversery... You are a sweet wife to spoil him so... I learned to bake strawberry/rubarb pie for my sweet hubby. It's his fave and I spoil him on his birthday too. Now as for your spice cake.. I WILL BAKE THIS CAKE!
    mouth watering Deb

  21. A belated Happy Birthday to the gorgeous birthday boy! Gosh that cake looks like a real winner Marie - it will go straight into my TEK folder.
    Millie ^_^

  22. Ohh! That looks marvelous marie!!


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